FLW - according to ABS (as understood by a warrior poet)

ABS - the haiku:

Flat left wrist occurs.
Learn the inevitable
or fall, Icarus.

Seriously, I’ve seen some crazy videos online regarding how to achieve a flat left wrist (FLW - not to be confused with Santa Cruz airport). Rulers, duct tape, exercises, etc. Wow. I’m so glad that I don’t have to search anymore.

Hopefully we can generate a little discussion on the FLW as there seems to be a huge consensus in the ether that believes the flat left wrist is a position to manufacture, rather than a consequence of proper intentions and pressures that cause the FLW to happen.

I’m not asserting that the FLW isn’t important. Clearly, all great ball strikers have demonstrated this. I’m also not here to say that you cannot artificially create that position and play competent golf in doing so. What I have found is that with ABS, you will achieve this position through drilling, proper intentions and understanding. In essence, we as trained golfers create pressures that our left wrist simply cannot support and it flattens/bows ala Hogan. Those extreme pressures are what makes that ball fly and sound the way it does when struck. Feeling those pressures allows us to control ball flight and distance.

In my experience because of all of the drilling (module 1, etc.) - my grip has moved from naturally strong to beyond weak. I’m actually taking my left hand grip with my left thumb at 11:00 o’clock and right hand on top of the club. This allows me to crank open easily (super flat) and rotate hard at the last minute without worrying about hooking no matter what I do. The left wrist flattens/bows naturally with application of module 3.

I’m a feel player, but very analytical. And while it’s a security blanket to understand how something works…the real security is feeling not only the pressures in the hands as I move through impact; it’s the ability to actually almost steer the ball flight based on the different feelings in fighting the forces between my two elbows. Towering fades or sizzling low punches without a “punch swing”. Now I’m relying on the same kind of feel I use when driving a car. Nobody drives by thinking they have to turn the wheel 1 1/4 turns clockwise to make a right turn! You feel it through the chassis and by experience. My body is the chassis now. Think Led Zeppelin’s “Trampled Underfoot” or Queen’s “I’m in Love With My Car”. :wink:

I’m interested to hear the discussion.

Captain Chaos

CC–I’m only on Module 1, but just recently the drilling has changed my grip. I have been using an overlap for years, but yesterday while drilling, changed to the interlock, for greater hand cohesion. It kind of just happened, my hands made the change with no input from my brain–interesting. Also, my left hand has weakened as well for the same reason, more range of motion going back. I’m at 1.5 knuckles, 2 at most. As far as the FLW goes, I don’t even think about it, or manipulate it. I’m expecting this module work to take care of it. We’ll see…


Much like Mr. Roger Taylor, The Captain has a very good Feel for his Automobile…
This is good discussion territory for sure…

I totally agree that a FLW is the result of forces, not a position a golfer “puts” the left wrist into.

I’m a feel player also. Personally, I rarely think about hardcore mechanics or positions, especially in the backswing or the transition. I’m aware of when it feels right, and I’ve learned to know what I did wrong when it doesn’t feel right. I believe that comes from experience and repetition. But, first the golfer must [somehow] learn what the correct “feels” are, and then build-up a huge number of repetitions so you “know” it and “own” it…and are able to recognize what is amiss when something doesn’t feel right…and correct it.

I can really relate to the analytical/feel combo. It seems that both approaches feed off & reinforce each other. The movement of the body combined with the opposing pressures will create the FLW as a by-product.

Are you playing with both a weak left and weak right hand? I think lag wrote somewhere that ‘weak left AND right hand grips have never won any tournaments’ and I’m curious about the reasoning behind that. Do you have thoughts on this?

P.S. you gotta love Roger Taylor’s voice on that track. Great stuff indeed…


Fe of Zion,

Then I’m sure you know the double edged sword of the combo. For me, it’s a by-product of being an engineer. However, the analytical can really get in the way of my allowing the feel to happen.

Yes, I am playing that way. While I’m not qualified to make a statement like Lag’s because I have no experience in that arena; I will go out on a limb and state that Hogan had a weak left and right hand grip. My justification is that I use my right hand in a very strong-handed way (if that makes any sense). The positions of the hands on the club allow me to:

  1. really rotate flat on the back swing
  2. aggressively hit and rotate late into impact (per my comment above)
  3. not allow the hook
  4. place my left wrist in a weakened position so it cannot help but break down (my forearms/wrists are very strong)
  5. put the maximum amount of feel into my hands that makes it utterly impossible to not use the pivot in combination with the other training we employ

I’m absolutely jazzed! With ABS, every time I think I’ve got the tiger by the tail, I learn something new that enhances everything I thought I knew about golfing. This is in stark contrast to the having it by the tail one day and finding out the next day you’ve only grabbed your own dick (so to speak). :wink:

“Get a grip on my boy racer rollbar - such a thrill when your radials squeal” - absolutely brilliant.

Captain Chaos

Lag or Two–could you weigh in here? I know you’ve said grip will change with Module 1 work. I think Hogan played with a weak right hand as well as left, but his pivot was otherworldly so he could do it. I prefer ballflight tell me what’s up, but what do you think? How has your grip changed over time and how?

Would also like to know what others use–overlap or interlocking? If you’ve used overlap, but switched to interlocking as you’ve progressed with ABS, has it helped and how?

The main reason that the left wrist has nothing directly to do with the propulsion of the club, and why it’s always a vapor trail or effect of some cause, is simply that it’s on the outside of the shaft. If it, by itself, tries to do anything, the only thing it can do is some form of peeling away from the outside of the club while the club stays behind. It’s one of the reasons I don’t like, and don’t recommend, practicing throwing a medicine ball- your left hand, being on the outside of the ball, has no roll in it’s propulsion. It’s similar to what I mentioned a while ago about throwing rocks and the ‘strong’ vs. ‘weak’ grip… it’s the fingers on the back of the shaft that do the work, the wrist is, as Lag says, a pure vapor trail.
I don’t think it does what it does through any weakness or inability to support the forces, it just does what it does because you do the right things. Pulling on those last 3 fingers locks in the upper arm, but these are not lone events in my view, they’re all connected and purposeful. But trying to accelerate the left wrist or the back of the left hand, is, at best, a swing thought, and a bad one at that. Learn to focus the unwinding, thrusting, rotational power of the body through the constant pressure of those last 3 fingers of the left hand on the back of the shaft, and you’ll get what you need.

Great stuff indeed indeed…


That’s interesting and I’ve just realised that weak grip could really open up the club face… will mess around with it soon…

We all know why that is.

I love it. I am almost finished reading Kris Tschetter’s new book on her relationship with Ben Hogan. He was always after her to weaken her left hand grip. He placed his grips on his clubs with a rib at the 5 o’clock position which would get his left thumb to the left side of the grip. Now, here is the magic of ABS. When I attempted this in the past, I did not have adequate impact position nor hand strength to hold onto the club sufficiently without flipping it. Being on Mod 2, I still have a long way to go but here is what I am noticing.

Tried the 11 o’clock thumb just this week while reading Kris’ book and it felt awkward at first but is feeling more comfortable with more reps.

While hitting my 5 to 10 balls/day just to see how my impact bag work is affecting my golf swing, I am noticing a feeling of my left wrist getting flat or starting to bow. The interesting part of this is that my left hand now travels very close to my left thigh and I am losing my left arm throw out. Having the feeling of my hands traveling closer to my left thigh is helping to bow the left wrist. My right arm or hand now feels like it wants to push the handle to an 8:30 striking position. The right hand helps to support the weak left thumb position.

The weak hands can open the club very early on the backswing and shut them very quickly through impact.

When looking at my hand position in the mirror I practice in front of, I can see 2 knuckles. When looking at my grip by just looking down, I see only 1 knuckle.

In closing, I think that the straight or bowed left wrist could possibly be done artificially but I believe it will just happen as a result of impact bag work.


The grip needs to be in sync with forearm rotation abilities. Stronger the forearm rotation, the weaker it can be. Weaker the forearm rotation, the stronger it will NEED to be.

It’s something you earn your way into.

Exactly! I noticed my hands moving closer to my body too, Bob! And those questioning the methodology…remember, I said that I went from very strong to beyond weak. It took a while to gain that strength. But I noticed every item you mentioned in your post when I got strong enough and educated in how to hit. As Lag stated above…your grip will morph necessarily as your learning and strength increase.

I too used to do this in my past golfing life when I hooked badly, but I was a swinger of the club then! Using that grip while swinging is straighter, but short and still prone to disaster if you come OTT. And OTT is inevitable because you want the distance back.

And no doubt it can be done artificially, but why would a golfer want to? It’s those forces and intentions that are so good for striking the ball that make FLW/bowing a fantastic litmus test.

And NRG…you say that like it’s a bad thing. :wink:

Captain Chaos

Not at all Captain,

I too am not embarrassed to say that I am dedicated student and the many thousands of reps have got me stronger than ever, though I doubt my wrists are as strong as yours. :wink:


I’ve tried to make it pretty clear that I have all that “heavy work” done by assistants now. The truth is that my forearms have gotten so strong that I’m afraid of ripping my own dick off by using too much module #1! :wink:

Captain Chaos

Captain, I fear that we may have strayed off topic a bit.

Interesting posts guys.

You’ve made me reflect on some of the pains of grip changes I’ve had. My module one work left me with a stronger left hand. My right hand was usually fine and if it got strong, it just wouldn’t feel right as I prefer the right arm -smash- feel and it just works… better if you aren’t overly strong gripped IMHO.

The -god knows how many- single handed reps I did with module 1 was a double edged sword. On one hand I wanted to make my left wrist as strong as my right wrist but I realized the left hand, working on its own for too long a period, prefers to have the thumb behind the shaft. I got into a bit of trouble with that. Now I do more ‘unified’ hands Module 1 training. I figured this out last year, and I always make sure to start, and end my module 1 drills with both hands on the grip just to be safe.

In some ways I’m a bit opposite from some of the comments- I changed from an interlock to an overlap. I also tend to view the flat left wrist from the ‘bent right wrist’ point of view. I can get very strong on my right side through impact. I find it works best for me to make damn sure that the right arm is not over powering everything… TOO early.

I’ll bet you got into trouble with that! Remember the modules are much more than just repetitions. You still have to think and remember that module 1 isn’t only about strength. Personally, I believe more should be made about knee flex in module 1. I saw Lag mentioned re-filming module 1 and 2 to add more that we’ve all learned over the seasons.

The thumb behind the shaft as you are describing is a throwing move. Very bad. The left rotates, the right supports and helps hit.

Captain Chaos

I don’t think a lot about my grip and haven’t in a while. But this thumb placement talk has me a bit perplexed, pehaps b/c of the different ways and reference points (and perspectives) we can have when describe where to put it on the club.

Here, C Squared, you’re saying not so good to have thumb behind w/ a strong grip. Other places I remember indications that weaker left hand grip is perhaps more optimal w/ ABS. Yet Lag in the 12 Piece thread indicated:

Someone straighten me out

I have seen Lag’s grip and thats exactly where he puts his left thumb; behind the handle. I think he also said once “I have seen storng left hand+ weak Right win money; both hands strong win money ; the left weak+ strong right win money but I have not seen both hands weak win any money”